Thursday, August 24, 2006

Changing the health and wellbeing of all Americans

Byron J. Richards, Founder/Director of Wellness Resources, is a board-certified clinical nutritionist and nationally renowned health expert, radio personality, educator and author. And according to a recent article, he's not too happy with the changes ahead for the health and wellbeing of Americans:
"Looking back in ten, twenty, or fifty years there will be a new congressional inquiry. This one will be centered on the massive numbers of deaths of Americans at the hands of Big Pharma and the FDA. It will make the Vioxx scandal look like a Sunday afternoon picnic. The congressional leaders, under pressure from millions of adversely affected patients and families of the injured, will be forced to examine the sordid monopoly of healthcare in America."

The article is worth a quick read.

Preventing another Vioxx mess?

The Associated Press reported today:
The Food and Drug Administration and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have agreed to develop an automated system to detect unanticipated problems with prescription drugs and medical devices.

The current system relies on the largely manual assessment of reports voluntarily submitted to the FDA, sometimes months or years after an event has occurred (reference the Vioxx recall). The new automated system is intended to recognize patterns and alert problems much quicker.

Friday, August 11, 2006

New Research Underway on Tick-Borne Illnesses

Scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center in the USA have received a $2 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease to investigate if increased intake of antioxidants can protect against tick-borne illnesses.

-- Rocky Mountain spotted fever (potentially life threatening) caused by the parasitic bacteria Rickettsia rickettsii.

-- Mediterranean Spotted Fever (also called Boutonneuse fever), caused by Rickettsia connorii (usually transmitted by dog ticks)

The science team, led by Sanjeev Sahni, are investigating the role that antioxidants, like alpha-lipoic acid, vitamins C and E, and antioxidants found in green tea, might play in preventing the rickettsia bacteria.

Visit through this link to read the full details of this story.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Government WIC Nutritional program to be revised

The US government has proposed that its Women, Infants and Children (WIC) nutritional program should be revised for the first time in over 25 years in order to better reflect the Dietary Guidelines for Americans... which would add fruit, vegetables and whole grains to the WIC packages for the fist time.

What is WIC?

Being pregnant or beastfeeding a baby is a big job. And the Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) was designed to help. If you have a low income, or no income, and: you are pregnant or have recently given birth, and you have a nutrition or health problem ...then you might qualify for this no cost service available in most USA States.

WIC provides at no cost:
- nutritious foods to supplement your diet
- information on healthy eating
- and referrals for health care

The current proposed rule would implement the first comprehensive revisions to the WIC food packages since 1980.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Inventions: sucking the caffeine out of coffee

US-based Decaf Company is ready to licence newly developed polymers that can be used to control or remove caffeine content in all beverages as they are served, according to an article posted 27/07/2006 on
The polymers, known officially as molecularly-imprinted polymers or MIPs, can be attached to either a stirrer or cup. When used in a beverage the MIPs then bind caffeine molecules to them, removing them from the drink itself. DeCaf said a few stirs could cut caffeine by up to 70 per cent.
Most coffee beans are decaffeinated using chemicals that soak up the caffeine molecules, which can also dampen flavour and aroma. According to DeCaf Company, its new polymers could decaffeinate coffee without altering the coffee beans or tea leaves and without the use of chemicals.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Nutrition and eye health

Ever wonder about your vision "Eye-Q"? The American Optometric Association (AOA) website has an excellent quiz to help you determine how much you know about eye health and what you can do through diet/nutrition to keep your eyes healthy.
"Research has shown that nutrition can impact the development of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which are the two leading causes of blindness and visual impairment among millions of aging Americans. Nutrition may be particularly important given that currently, treatment options after diagnosis for these eye diseases are limited." AOA Website
Visit this link to take the quiz.